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Guest Jonny

volts gage going daft on ower dash

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Can any body help.?

we have had this problem for a few months now. wen we put the charger on the batteries when moored up the gage on the dash seems to jolt up and down for some reason. when on the move the volts gage doesnt move at all. there seams to be life in the batteries at the hot air blown fan work lighting nav light ect ect work fine.

:santa: :santa: :santa: :santa:

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Jonny

Might need a little more info on this one.

Are you talking both domestic and engine batteries, ie do you have separate voltmeters.?

Where are you connecting the charger?

when you say jolt up and down are you talking random rapid movement.

Do your voltmeter/s show normal behaviour when the engine is started?

It is possible that the voltmeters should not show until the engine is started to prevent them draining current when the boat is left for long periods.

The items you said work ok are they taking direct feeds off of the batterys?

I also suggest you get a little multimeter, a cheap one less than a fiver will help you no end in determining what is going on

Good luck mate

Did you have a good time on the boat?

Gordon

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Jonny! get yourself a cheap multimeter, a basic one cost about a tenner, I never go anywhere without mine, it could be your voltmeter is knackered, it could even be corroded terminals or it could be as simple as a bad earth, with electrics it could be a number of things, so I doubt anyone could give much advice without actualy testing it for you, I'd rule out the battery's because even if they are low it should show some reading on the voltmeter, trace all the wiring back from the voltmeter and check all the connections, making sure they are clean and secure, that goes for the fuse as well, without some sort of tester you can't test to see if your gettting 12v at the voltmeter end of things, if you have a spare light you can make a simple tester, all you need is a 12v bulbholder and bulb connected to two lenghts of wire, touch the two ends of the wire to the two terminals at the Voltmeter end, and if the bulb lights ok then your voltmeter is knackered, just a thought have you taken the two wires off the voltmeter at some point, some voltmeters have directional flow, so if you have put them back on the wrong terminals the needle will go over to the left and not the right side to show the real reading, best I can do for you Jonny, as I say a multimeter is a godsend if you get out somewhere, and something electrical goes wrong, at least you have a good chance of sorting it out, and if your only using it for basic stuff they are really easy to use,, :-D

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It is possible that the voltmeters should not show until the engine is started to prevent them draining current when the boat is left for long periods.

Gordon

:-D Good thinking Gordon, most don't show a reading until the engine is running, I'm wondering if the needle jumping is due to the charger giving a pulse charge rather than a constant charge, but Jonny said when moving it dosn't show any reading, very odd but as we both agree theres no real way of telling much without a multi meter to check things, :-D

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thanks for the info sorry for the late reply been watching the soaps :-D :wave

when you turn the key when engine is not running it will show you the volts.

on the volts gage it hasn't been past 11vvolts for a few months now there seams to be loads of juice in the batteries like i said the loo works lights ect. the amps gage in the rear cabin neva move i don't think it even works or is connected. cheersbar

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Jonny

Like Mojo said this is going to be impossible to diagnose remotely. I am still concerned that you only seem to mention one voltmeter, how many batteries have you got I assume you must have separate domestic and starter batteries, Maybe the voltmeter is on the starter battery and the items you mentioned on the domestic battery. As we both say you will be working blind without a multimeter. I keep 2 on the boat an analogue and a digital, the digital is not essential but has got me out of trouble on certain checks .

If you can give us more info we will keep suggestions coming but a fault could be anywhere and there are long wiring runs on that boat with the voltmeter being up front

Gordon

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yer i think that multi metre thing would be the way to go

we have one starter battery and two domestics we have no idea where all the wires are coming and going to as we don't have a blue print of the boat.

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Jonny It has to be the way to go as I doubt there is or ever was such a thing as a blueprint, and goodness knows what changes have been made to the wiring over the years. You need to narrow down the search starting with which battery that voltmeter is monitoring and then how it is wired, the multi meter will help and it should then help you isolate the fault, probably nothing worse than a dodgy earth.

Good luck Gordon

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:-D Jonny chuck it in the bin :-D get a cheap multitester, make a couple of extension lead for it or buy them, that way you can switch it to circuit and check all the wiring for breaks, you can find out where each wire go's to and what it works, make sure you switch the battery's off when your circuit testing, I keep the short live red cable that comes with the tester, and have a four meter black extension cable with a small insulated crocodile clip on it, an example of how it works is, turn the battery's off, switch to circuit test, connect the crocodile clip to say a wire in a suspect light in the cabin, then from where your main wiring is at the fuseboard, touch the lead to each wire in turn then when you get a reading you know that is the wire and it is ok, it also gives you the opportunity to do a diagram so that you know what each fuse supplies, if you leave the batteries on and put the tester on DC then at the light you touch the two test probes to the wires, it'll tell you if it's live and how many volts are getting through to the light, either way if you get no readings the chances are there is a break in the wire somewhere and you just need to replace the wire, what I do is get a length of temporary wire and connect one end at the fuseboard, the other to the fitting and if that then works i'll re-wire it permanently, If I could only have one tool on my boat it would be my trusty Multi tester,,it has 101 uses on a boat and has got me out of trouble lots of times,, :-D

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